April 27 (UPI) — Local and federal authorities entered a third day of a manhunt Friday, searching for a man who gunned down a Maine sheriff’s deputy.
More than 200 officers from various states are searching for suspect John D. Williams. He’s accused of shooting Somerset County Sheriff’s Deputy Cpl. Eugene Cole dead Wednesday.
Friday, officials made a direct plea to the 29-year-old Williams.
“If John Williams is listening to me: We will do anything to resolve this situation peacefully,” Somerset County Sheriff Dale Lancaster said. “It has come to our attention during this investigation that he would like to reach out and speak to us. I would like him to understand we are here to listen.”
The FBI has announced a $20,000 reward for information leading to his arrest.
Parts of central Maine have been locked down as the FBI and U.S. Marshals Service took part in the manhunt.
“Anything from a text message, any type of instant message through social media,” Maine State Police Lt. Col. John Cote said. “Those types of people and those types of contacts right now are critically important to us as we try to locate him and take him into custody.”
After failing to appear in court for robbery charges Wednesday, Williams is accused of shooting Cole, a 13-year veteran, and commandeering his police cruiser. He ultimately abandoned the car.
Police aren’t sure what led to the shooting and don’t know if Williams is being helped by an accomplice.
Cole is the first police officer to be killed in Maine in nearly 30 years.
The #FBI, Somerset County Sheriff’s Office & @MEStatePolice are offering a $20K reward for information leading to the arrest of John D. Williams. He is considered armed & dangerous. Anyone with information should call 207-624-7076 or email https://t.co/48YS0b0hkh pic.twitter.com/9ah2W2XUM7- FBI Boston (@FBIBoston) April 26, 2018